Taking time off and its influence on admissions

(Applications Advice, Letters of Recommendation . . . )
pauliv
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Feb 07, 2010 2:40 pm

Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby pauliv » Tue Jun 01, 2010 12:33 am

I have been thinking about taking time off to join Teach for America before applying to law school. How will this affect my potential admission decisions?

Thanks for any thoughts

User avatar
Moxie
Posts: 665
Joined: Thu Aug 06, 2009 3:27 pm

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby Moxie » Tue Jun 01, 2010 12:41 am

It's acceptable (and sometimes preferred). Especially if you're doing TFA, since it seems to offer a small boost to your admission chances.

User avatar
Dr. Strangelove
Posts: 557
Joined: Sun Mar 28, 2010 5:59 pm

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby Dr. Strangelove » Tue Jun 01, 2010 12:43 am

This will help you but do TFA because you want to, not because you think it will improve your chances at admissions.

User avatar
kcg171
Posts: 93
Joined: Sun Jul 20, 2008 4:54 am

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby kcg171 » Tue Jun 01, 2010 12:57 am

you don't get a boost, but you can make a huge difference in the lives of some awesome kids.

User avatar
Quine
Posts: 191
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 5:49 am

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby Quine » Tue Jun 01, 2010 1:32 am

kcg171 wrote:you don't get a boost, but you can make a huge difference in the lives of some awesome kids.

:roll:

User avatar
DoubleChecks
Posts: 2333
Joined: Fri Sep 25, 2009 4:35 pm

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby DoubleChecks » Tue Jun 01, 2010 1:35 am

? from everything ive heard and read, TFA gives a good boost. way better than the avg soft (though URM status would prob still easily trump it). if you happen to be doing it, i believe law schools will look on it favorably. i certainly cant see it hurting you.

ExpectLess
Posts: 218
Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2010 3:12 pm

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby ExpectLess » Tue Jun 01, 2010 12:33 pm

.
Last edited by ExpectLess on Sat Dec 11, 2010 3:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

09042014
Posts: 18282
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 10:47 pm

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby 09042014 » Tue Jun 01, 2010 12:40 pm

ExpectLess wrote:You almost certainly will not have time to study for the LSAT/apply while doing TFA, so expect to take a third year off if you choose to join.


If you can't find two hours to study of the lsat, you are doing it wrong.

@OP, it is a decent soft, but it won't significantly help you. Well, northwestern basically requires work experience so it will help you there, but so would be a desk jockey.

thechee
Posts: 174
Joined: Tue Oct 06, 2009 8:42 am

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby thechee » Tue Jun 01, 2010 12:43 pm

Not that this should influence your decision, but I think a number of schools will waive your app fees if you're applying straight out of TFA.

ExpectLess
Posts: 218
Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2010 3:12 pm

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby ExpectLess » Tue Jun 01, 2010 12:50 pm

.
Last edited by ExpectLess on Sat Dec 11, 2010 3:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

09042014
Posts: 18282
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 10:47 pm

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby 09042014 » Tue Jun 01, 2010 12:51 pm

ExpectLess wrote:
If you can't find two hours to study of the lsat, you are doing it wrong.


A clear indication you have never done TFA.

I work full-time now and have plenty of time to study when I get home at night and still hang out with friends after. The same is not the case while in TFA--you truly have no time or energy to do much of anything else.


You are teaching school right? I don't buy you are working 12-14 hour days teaching.

User avatar
crysmissmichelle
Posts: 399
Joined: Thu Oct 08, 2009 8:39 am

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby crysmissmichelle » Tue Jun 01, 2010 1:03 pm

DF--Sorry to disagree here, but TFA members, by design, are usually in their first years of teaching. . .which is time consuming enough, but usually are also teaching for schools--also by design--where more time and dedication is necessary in order to be successful. So, most in these schools and members of TFA themselves would say, if you CAN find 2 hours to study LSAT, you're probably doing it wrong.

The first two years of teaching are very challenging and very time-consuming. . . .12 hour days are not uncommon. . .

User avatar
NayBoer
Posts: 1013
Joined: Wed Mar 04, 2009 3:24 pm

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby NayBoer » Tue Jun 01, 2010 1:14 pm

I worked full time and commuted while studying for the LSAT. I mostly studied on weekends, and some nights. Weekends were way more productive.

Does TFA include summer school?

09042014
Posts: 18282
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 10:47 pm

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby 09042014 » Tue Jun 01, 2010 1:18 pm

crysmissmichelle wrote:DF--Sorry to disagree here, but TFA members, by design, are usually in their first years of teaching. . .which is time consuming enough, but usually are also teaching for schools--also by design--where more time and dedication is necessary in order to be successful. So, most in these schools and members of TFA themselves would say, if you CAN find 2 hours to study LSAT, you're probably doing it wrong.

The first two years of teaching are very challenging and very time-consuming. . . .12 hour days are not uncommon. . .


12 + 2 = 14 hours. Leaving 10 more. Still plenty. You only have to study for what, 2-3 months.

Nut up.

ExpectLess
Posts: 218
Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2010 3:12 pm

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby ExpectLess » Tue Jun 01, 2010 4:02 pm

.
Last edited by ExpectLess on Sat Dec 11, 2010 3:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
clintonius
Posts: 1239
Joined: Mon Feb 08, 2010 1:50 am

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby clintonius » Tue Jun 01, 2010 4:13 pm

ITT: Desert Fox is wrong.

09042014
Posts: 18282
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 10:47 pm

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby 09042014 » Tue Jun 01, 2010 4:19 pm

clintonius wrote:ITT: Desert Fox is wrong.


ITT: People are overachievers.

I went to a decent high school and teachers didn't prep nearly that much. Why is prepping for teaching a bunch of societal rejects basic math for the tenth time so time consuming?

And FTR I dated girl who did TFA in Texas, and she taught 7th graders science (chem maybe?) and day in and day out 12 hours was a lot more than she did. I'd believe 10.

Edit: now im just being contrary to be contrary.

I worked 10 hours and commuted 2, and still did a PT every day for three weeks. Make time if it is important.

User avatar
KMaine
Posts: 862
Joined: Wed Dec 10, 2008 1:57 pm

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby KMaine » Tue Jun 01, 2010 4:26 pm

DF - It's o.k. to admit you are wrong. Also, I am happy that those "societal rejects" have people who care enough to take their jobs more seriously than LSAT practice.

ExpectLess
Posts: 218
Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2010 3:12 pm

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby ExpectLess » Tue Jun 01, 2010 4:28 pm

.
Last edited by ExpectLess on Sat Dec 11, 2010 3:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.

09042014
Posts: 18282
Joined: Wed Oct 14, 2009 10:47 pm

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby 09042014 » Tue Jun 01, 2010 4:30 pm

KMaine wrote:DF - It's o.k. to admit you are wrong. Also, I am happy that those "societal rejects" have people who care enough to take their jobs more seriously than LSAT practice.


That is pretty stupid.

cubswin
Posts: 618
Joined: Mon May 25, 2009 4:40 pm

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby cubswin » Tue Jun 01, 2010 4:41 pm

I still don't see why putting teachers with almost no training in inner-city classrooms is so noble.

User avatar
clintonius
Posts: 1239
Joined: Mon Feb 08, 2010 1:50 am

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby clintonius » Tue Jun 01, 2010 4:49 pm

Yeah, it really isn't set up for long-term success. I know a number of people who joined TFA and are now teachers for life, but the majority of people who joined up quit after their two years were up, if they even made it that long. I do think it's a noble idea, but the reality of the program doesn't line up terribly well with the goals.

At any rate, 1) TFA is one of the better softs to have under your belt for law school, 2) it's probably going to devour your time, so don't count on being able to do an inordinate amount of studying for the LSAT, and 3) don't do it if you only want to pad your resume. If your motivation doesn't come from what you're doing within the program, it will almost certainly eat you alive.

User avatar
Quine
Posts: 191
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 5:49 am

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby Quine » Tue Jun 01, 2010 4:59 pm

cubswin wrote:I still don't see why putting teachers with almost no training in inner-city classrooms is so noble.


That's an excellent question. Talk to kcg171.

User avatar
Quine
Posts: 191
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 5:49 am

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby Quine » Tue Jun 01, 2010 5:01 pm

ExpectLess wrote:Desert Fox: I've been a biomedical researcher for about 6 months now after quitting TFA, working 8:30-5, and I have plenty of time after work to study and do whatever when I get home. When I was teaching, however, I was at school from 6:45am till about 4:00pm, after which I had a few more hours of work--say, till about 8:00pm. You then have extra work to do for TFA on top of that, and once a month your Saturday is devoted to more TFA things. Technically, this might leave two hours before bed to study LSAT, but it's an impossible thing to do. You're not just teaching in TFA, you're mostly corralling out of control children. I was teaching high school and had 36 kids per class but didn't even have a classroom to teach any of my classes in, the kids consisted of a large number of felons and I even had a convicted rapist. I had to physically break up fights and scream and yell at kids who were often much larger than me (and I'm 6'2"/175) all day every day.

The only time you could possibly have a chance to study is over the summer, but a good chunk of people are so miserable they end up either going home for the summer or leaving the country or something along those lines.

Trust me, DF. There is no time to study while in TFA.


Did you make a huge difference in the lives of some awesome kids?

User avatar
Quine
Posts: 191
Joined: Tue Feb 17, 2009 5:49 am

Re: Taking time off and its influence on admissions

Postby Quine » Tue Jun 01, 2010 5:12 pm

Desert Fox wrote:
KMaine wrote:DF - It's o.k. to admit you are wrong. Also, I am happy that those "societal rejects" have people who care enough to take their jobs more seriously than LSAT practice.


That is pretty stupid.


I agree. For a healthy number of TFA-ers, the resume boost is the motivator - not their insatiable "care" for "the children." I have a friend doing TFA next year who has never so much as tutored anyone in her life, and is knowingly padding her resume for law school. If she cared so much, you'd think she'd leave her spot for someone either more experienced, or actually interested in teaching as a career. For many, though I'm sure not all, TFA is a selfish endeavor.




Return to “Law School Admissions Forum”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Yahoo [Bot] and 8 guests